I guess it has been two years since the last time because I was once again summoned for jury duty. I just got back from spending eight boring hours at the courthouse and the only thing I have to show for it is a measly $4.00 for transportation reimbursement. Well, $4.00 and a few highlights:

  • On my way to my car, I began the day by being approached by a huffing and puffing Salvadoran woman toting a vacuum cleaner and bucket of cleaning supplies and asking me "wheech way to EEErving?" When I finally understood she meant "Irving Street," and pointed up the hill and mentioned "a few blocks up," her face just crumpled in misery. She explained that she was supposed to clean someone's house and, instinctively, I asked, "do you want me to give you a ride?" She gratefully accepted and we spent the next few minutes getting her supplies into the trunk and discussing along the way, "ooh, how far!" and "ooh, it's so cold!"
  • On my way to the courthouse, I stopped for a cup of hot chocolate which was a brilliant idea on my part because when I got to the courthouse, the line to get through security was going out of the door. I was probably 30th in the slow-moving line and did I mention how "ooh, it's so cold" today?
  • In the jury room, I sat by the filmy window to enjoy what little sun there was to enjoy while the clerk popped in part 8 of Ken Burn's 9-part series, "The Civil War." I listened to (of course) Morgan Freeman narrate parts of the tale while I gazed outside at the traffic and peds. Why, I asked myself, did that cabbie just double park, get out of his cab, unbuckle his belt to tuck in his shirt, rezip and rebuckle right out on the street before making an illegal U-turn through traffic? Oh yeah. DC.
  • At lunch, I grabbed a sammich from Cosi and ate it in the dismal courthouse cafeteria because there was nary a spot to sit at the restaurant.
  • Back in the jury room, the clerk read out a list of people who had not checked in. One old man raised his hand and asked why he was not on the list. The clerk explained that he wasn't on the list because he had checked in. He raised his voice and angrily announced, "but I want to be checked out!" I, along with my fellow jurors, was astounded to hear him then rant: "I am 72 years old! I'm sick! I am no small chicken! Why do I have to keep coming here? I was evil when I was young! I am more evil now! I am worse than the devil! The Bible says 'judge not lest ye be judged' so I can't judge nobody! Where is my check?" After he was asked to step outside, the room was filled with nervous laughter and jokes. Best among them: "Where do you think he went to lunch?" "According to Charlie Daniels, The Devil Went Down to Fuddruckers."
  • At 2:30, another batch of jurors left to perform their civic duty but I was among those who had to remain until the last judge decided whether or not he needed a jury. To pacify us, the clerk popped in part 9 of "The Civil War." We just got to an interesting part about someone accusing a politician of dressing in women's clothing when the last of us were called. Alas and alack, I was among them.
  • After sitting through THE most inefficient voir dire in a hot, stuffy room, only half of the jurors had been interviewed and it was nearing 5:00 p.m. When the court reporter came out of the secret room and by her mere presence implied that we might be getting let go, the pens began clicking throughout the rows like crickets coming out at dusk and legs began bouncing as though everyone was engaging in traditional Greek grape-stomping activities. Rather than keep us for another hour or call us back tomorrow, the judge let us all go and NOBODY was chosen in the end.
  • I trudged back upstairs to claim my $4.00 and get the proof that I served. Hopefully, it will be longer than another two years before they come knocking on my door again. And now, I sleep.


Item No. 1: I know it's tomorrow, but Happy Birthday, H-Biddy!!! Can't wait to see you in April (or maybe sooner?) and can't wait for you to see me and mah bellay. Here's your prezzie.

Item No. 2: Extry, extry, read all about it! Article written by my cousin flexing his writing chops on the subject of the Danish cartoons.

Item No. 3: Gojira, you have no idea how lucky you are. It looks like the fierce wind blew open the neighbor's gate again and now there are no dogs to be seen or, more importantly, to be heard. Ye'll sleep well tonight, lassie.

Item No. 4: Happy bridal shower, LB! Mmmmm, Lebanese Taverna.


Holy Krakatoa! I fainted on the Metro today! I was sitting there, minding my own beeswax, reading the Post Express, when a wave of dizziness and heat overcame me. I took off my scarf, unbuttoned my coat, and leaned forward but could not get comfortable or shake the pretty spirals and bursts of black from my eyes. As we approached the next station, I waited for the train to come to a stop and planned to get out and lay down somewhere (I wasn't going to be picky). I leaned my head against the window as the train slowed down and the next thing I knew, I was at the airport. I was only out for about 3 minutes or less, but it was crazy trying to come out of it: like a swimmer struggling to break the surface of water above. By the time I lifted my heavy eyelids and looked around, I realized I was still on the train. In the brief but unexciting interim, I had traveled one whole stop, dropped my umbrella, and cooled off. So, like any typical daughter-of-a-doctor (flashback of me running out of my room with four of my toes clearing the door jamb and my pinkie toe staying behind and Dad telling me that my pinkie toe was only bruised even though it was clearly pointing in a completely perpendicular position with my other toes), I rested for a bit and then continued on to work.

No worries (*looks pointedly in cybermom's direction*), I'm totally fine. LB made me call the doctor's office to make sure it was nothing severe (it wasn't) and I did some research on my own (looks like the combo of being slightly anemic, being over-layered, and possibly not eating enough was the culprit). There's nothing to be concerned about but it was certainly a surprise. I haven't fainted in quite a while and I forgot how out-of-body-like an experience it was. Other times include, but are not limited to, fainting at Hajj right on my face, fainting in a movie theater during a midnight screening right in a filthy college bathroom, and fainting in the hospital pre-appendectomy. Good times. Good times.


I went for my monthly doctor's appointment last week and everything is ship shape. After waiting for half an hour, I had to take a glucose screening test which involved me guzzling down a small bottle of sugary liquid (mine was fruit punch flavored) in under five minutes and then sitting around for an hour (reading, sighing, and surreptiously glancing over to compare belly sizes of my fellow waiting room denizens) before getting my blood drawn to see how well my body processes sugar. Clearly, these people do not know that one of the few things I can do well is process sugar:

mmmmmm . . . doughnuts.

(via upyernoz.)

If you want to see yourself as a Simpsons character, go here. If you want to see TP as a Simpsons character, go here.


I've lived in DC or thereabouts for 10 years now and am a veteran Metro rider. I've done the early morning long haul from Shady Grove to Capital South (where the driver would sing "DU-pont CIRRRRcle!" every time we reached that stop), the crowded briefcase-and-newspapers-open-wide-obstacle course from Cleveland Park to McPherson Square (where I would walk by the White House every morning on my way to work), the short stint from Woodley Park to Bethesda (and that hella long flight of escalators), and the current 45 minute trek from U Street to King Street (where at least I get a view of the beautiful Potomac River every morning and evening). But never, NEVER, have I had someone fall on me. I mean FALL RIGHT ONTO ME. Until the other day.

An older woman boarded the train and passed up some very choice empty seats before deciding that she wanted to sit right next to me. Laden down with a designer purse, an umbrella, and an enormous duffle bag that was about 2/3rds her own size, she slowly made her way down the aisle. She started to arrange herself before sitting down but then the train lurched forward and she lurched backwards - right into my lap, which was already full with my own bag, my book, and my belly. She apologized profusely and I automatically forgave her, but seriously, people, when you get on the train and see an empty seat, take it. I know you want to sit right next to me, but you can admire me from afar too. In fact, that's an even better view! I need to start commuting with a dummy just to avoid getting crushed.
Got tagged by Professor Ushi:

1. Nervous habits : biting the inside of my cheeks
2. Are you double-jointed? No so much double as possibly missing a joint in my thumbs
3. Can you roll our tongue? Aye
4. Can you raise one eye brow at a time? The left moreso than the right.
5. Can you blow spit bubbles? I could at one time but haven't tried it lately.
6. Can you cross your eyes? Yes, and I can also freakily uncross one eye slowly while the other eye remains noseward. I think I learned that from my grandfather.
7. Tattoos? No
8. Piercings? Yes
9. Do you make your bed daily? Kinda

10. Which shoe goes on first? Right
11. Speaking of shoes, have you ever thrown one at anyone? Not to my recollection
12. On an average, how much money do you carry? Why, are you planning to jack me?
13. What jewelry do you wear 24/7? Wedding, engagement, and ear rings.
14. Favourite piece of clothing? Pajamas
15. Do you twirl your spaghetti or cut it? Twirl
16. Have you ever eaten spam? No, but I know the Monty Python song dedicated to it by heart
17. Do you use extra salt on your food? No, my Dad would kill me.
18. How many cereals in your cabinet? One - Honey Bunches of Goats.
20. What's your favourite fastfood restaurant/chain? Chipotle.
21. Do you cook? Aye

22. How often do you brush your teeth? Twice a day
23. Hair drying method? Towel and then air dry
24. Have you ever colored/highlighted your hair? No - man, my answers are boring.

25. Do you ever swear? Rarely - I like to make up my own swear words
26. Do you ever spit? When the occassion warrants it

27. Animal - Robot pirate monkeys.
28. Food - Yes
29. Month - September
30. Day - Thursday because the next day is Friday followed by the weekend
31. Cartoon - Yes
32. Shoe brand - Ecco
33. Subject in school - English
34. Color - Black
35. Sport - Power-napping
36. TV shows - Yes
37. Things to do in the spring - Go for walks and admire the bloomage.
38. Things to do in the summer - Travel
39.Things to do in the fall - Bust out the sweaters but not the coats
40. Things to do in the winter - Get validation from the news that it's a snow day
41. In the CD player - Electric Version by The New Pornographers
42. Person you talk most on the phone with - Three-way tie among LB, TP, and Mom
43. Reading - Currently: Fargo Rock City by Chuck Klosterman.
44. Do you regularly check yourself out in store windows/mirrors? No
45. What color is your bedroom? Beige this month; yellow next month.
46. Do you use an alarm clock? Yep, tuned to NPR
47. Window seat or aisle? Window - especially b/c the aisle seat is more prone to accidents (i.e. luggage falling from the overhead compartment and onto your head or shoulders, flight attendants hurtling through the aisles with the metal cart and right into your foot or knee, and tomato juice splashing on to you as it is handed to the window seat patron)
48. What's your sleeping position? I'm like a rotisserie chicken, I spin around and around
49. In hot weather, do you use a blanket? A sheet
50. Do you snore? No
51. Do you sleepwalk? No
52. Do you talk in your sleep? Sometimes while I'm about to fall asleep but someone (*looks in TP's, LB's, and Gojira's direction*) is still talking to me, I'll respond but really I'm asleep and have no idea what I just said.
53. Do you sleep with stuffed animals? No
54. How about with the light on? No
55. Do you fall asleep with the TV/radio on? I can but I don't deliberately do so.
56. Last interesting person you met? I don't meet people



The sheer arrogance and gall of this chick astounds me (plus, the lack of her grasp of the difference between "sow" and "sew" is annoying). Welcome to "Lawyers Behaving Badly":

Dear Attorney ______, At this time, I am writing to inform you that I will not be accepting your offer. After careful consideration, I have come to the conclusion that the pay you are offering would neither fulfill me nor support the lifestyle I am living in light of the work I would be doing for you. I have decided instead to work for myself, and reap 100% of the benefits that I sew. Thank you for the interviews.

Dianna _____, Esq.


Dianna -

Given that you had two interviews, were offered and accepted the job (indeed, you had a definite start date), I am surprised that you chose an e-mail and a 9:30 PM voicemail message to convey this information to me. It smacks of immaturity and is quite unprofessional. Indeed, I did rely upon your acceptance by ordering stationery and business cards with your name, reformatting a computer and setting up both internal and external e-mails for you here at the office. While I do not quarrel with your reasoning, I am extremely disappointed in the way this played out. I sincerely wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors.

- Will ____


A real lawyer would have put the contract into writing and not exercised any such reliance until he did so. Again, thank you.


Thank you for the refresher course on contracts. This is not a bar exam question. You need to realize that this is a very small legal community, especially the criminal defense bar. Do you really want to start pissing off more experienced lawyers at this early stage of your career?


bla bla bla


Hunker down, kids. Here comes the snow. Good thing we have the following to keep us occupied:


More excerpts from "Modern Muslim Cooking of Indo-Pakistan" by A. Nisa Bhatti, First Edition 1964:

Sheep's Feet

It is another popular dish of this country. It is delicious and invigorating. It is prepared especially in winter.

10 sheep's feet
1/3 level teaspoon turmeric powder
2 flakes garlic
2 oz. onion
1/2 oz. ginger
1/4 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 lb. curd
4 oz. ghee
1/2 lb onion

Wash and clean sheep's feet. Scrap [sic] out hair and remove shoes (if not already done) and boil in water adding all the spices except ginger and garam masala till water is dry and feet are tender. Then fry them adding sliced ginger, garam masala and 4 oz. ghee. Again add water (sufficient to cook the feet and gravy required). Let simmer on low heat for two hours till ready. Sprinkle with chopped green coriander, green pepper, garam masala (curry powder) and fried onion slices. Remove from heat after 5 minutes and serve. (sufficient for 6 persons).


Avast! I've been tagged by Wayfarer. And so, without further ado:

Four Jobs I've Had in My Life

1) Census taker for the U.S. Government
2) Volunteer Attorney for the National Audobon Society
3) Cleaning Lady
4) Senior Legal Counsel for Discovery Communications, Inc.

Four Movies I Could Watch Over and Over, and Have

1) The Shawshank Redemption
2) Monty Python and the Holy Grail
3) This is Spinal Tap
4) The Godfather

and I would add more because making me choose favorite movies is like making me choose a favorite child, but this will have to do for now.

Four Places I Have Lived

1) Merthyr Tydfil, Wales
2) Louisville, KY
3) St. Louis, MO
4) Washington, DC

Four TV Shows I Love To Watch

1) Iron Chef
2) The Office
3) The Daily Show
4) The Simpsons (mostly the early years)

Four Places I Have Been On Vacation

1) Asia
2) Europe
3) Africa
4) Middle East
More you say? Lookee hyah.

Four Websites I Visit Daily

1) Bloglines
2) The Onion
3) Wikipedia
4) DCist

Four Favorite Foods

1) Pakistani
2) Italian
3) Ethiopian
4) Mexican

Four Places I Would Rather Be Right Now

1) Hawaii
2) Italy
3) In my comfy bed
4) In my new house

Four People Whom I Tag Next

1) Chai
2) Gojira
3) Sanchez
4) Yasminay